Whenever a group of people with different opinions gather at a table to discuss a controversial topic, sparks are bound to fly.

But Archdiocese of Vancouver lawyer Mary Margaret MacKinnon said the experience can be surprisingly instructive, too. That was her experience while chairing the Case Review Committee that studied 36 cases of sexual abuse by priests in Vancouver since the 1950s over 13 months. Its report was released Nov. 22.

“It was difficult in some ways because we had a bunch of divergent voices at the table, but it was also transformative because it let us hear from people who we haven’t heard from at the table before,” she told The B.C. Catholic.

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